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Who are the real friends of China, amongst European countries? [Copy link] 中文

Rank: 6Rank: 6

Post time 2005-2-24 03:26:01 |Display all floors
Your answer and why?

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Post time 2005-2-25 17:24:22 |Display all floors


It really depends on what you mean as a friend....but in the context of a country that isn't China's enemy, then all countries in Europe are China's friend.

Countries which are having particularly favourable relationships with China now  I would say are Germany and France with the UK on its way to have similarly good relations.  But these are the 'Big Three' in Europe and so these countries tend to have at the very minimum a reasonable relationships with most other countries due to their economic importance.

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Rank: 8Rank: 8

Post time 2005-2-25 18:30:25 |Display all floors

Hmmmmmm i have to agree with Mike!

In the world of megaphone diplomacy.....The European Gentleman excels!!!!!!

As for the English, the Chinese always worry of being forced to consume "opium" again!. I doubt the British Gentleman especially those from the Labour party would want to do such tricks again!

Already, Britain is offering Rover company, Selling BP refineries and Petrol station in Malaysia and Singapore but investing heavily in China!

Sure! agree with Mike!


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Post time 2005-2-25 21:33:43 |Display all floors

Nuanced friendship


I think we need to consider the identity of the term "China" when addressing this question.

There can be no question that the British people, for example, regard Chinese people (such as the 350,000 who live and study in the UK) with respect, as hardworking, law-abiding and family oriented people. Indeed, Hong Kong has always served as an impressive beacon of Chinese success to the British people. (I don't, for one second, attribute the lion's share for HK's economic success to that island's former colonial masters.) So, the inter-personal relationship is fine.

But the political scene is more problematic, as the Ch authorities have not endeared themselves to Western public opinion, following events in Beijing in the late 80's and the SARS fiasco of 2 years ago. However, I think there is a growing awareness of the great strides China has taken since it (effectively) renounced radical com munism in the 70's, and an expectation that China will take it's place in the community of developed, democratic nations, in the future. Certainly, the dominant attitude in Europe seems to one of contructive engagement with China - as evidenced by the imminent relaxation of the EU arms embargo.

I see a bright future of co-operation and mutually beneficial relations   between the Middle Kingdom and Europe.

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Post time 2005-2-25 21:37:10 |Display all floors

greendragon...your right...

I totally agree, the colonial rule of Hong Kong was a bad idea (though its actually done the area some good). Still though, better  I guess than reigning with the dimplomancy of Tianemen sqaure ;)

I think because of China's economic growth it will suddenly get many more friends in the future ;), and like with every other capitalist country, it will like having them because of the money that 'friendship' can bring. I only hope its economy maintains stability so that that is can prosper for a long period of time.

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Post time 2005-2-26 08:42:39 |Display all floors


Are we talking about REAL friends? Because at the moment I see a lot of greedy countries lining up to improve relations with China simply because it's doing well economically.

I can't say that Chirac really has China's best interests at heart - he only sees $ signs. He doesn't care what China does with the military hardware he wants to flog. He's just obsessed with finding a large power he can ally himself to (bar the US). If China got into trouble, I think France would suddenly find itself very busy. The same would apply if he decided another country had more to offer.

Now Shroeder's a different kettle of fish. In Time Magazine recently, he said that Germany would not increase arms exports to China after the lifting of the ban (whenever that happens). He seems to be more sincere about increasing bilateral trade, something which will benefit ordinary people. So I would rank Germany above France very easily.

Can't comment on the "minor" European players.

So that leaves good old Britain. Now although I'd be biased, I think Britain has a good friendship to offer China as well - possibly a better one than Germany. Britain has always had a very "global" view of international affairs, due to our reliance on maritime trade, whereas continental Europe has been a bit more concerned with itself. Britons have had a long-standing fascination with the Far East, so there's a lot of scope for cultural exchange.

We already have a significant ex-Chinese population in the UK, which is well-respected for working hard and respecting British institutions. Chinese food is especially popular here, much more so than on the Continent. Also our leading cultural institutions, such as the British Museum, are very eager to display Chinese historical artifacts to the general public. Our theatres also have put on Japanese cultural performances many times - China could quite easily do the same.

Hong Kong did lead to tensions between the two countries. Yet it also forced us to find ways to co-operate. We were the first major Western power to recognise the CCP as the legitimate government of China. In a way it's a shame that we couldn't agree to another lease of the New Territories as that would have provided an extra incentive to bring us closer together. But it's better to not wish for such things - it could have gone horribly wrong!

I think Britain tends to make more lasting relationships. Japan used to be everyone's best Asian friend in Europe - not anymore. Chirac was wild about Japan - until Japan's economy crashed. Whereas in 2001 Britain had a nationwide "festival" that lasted an entire year, celebrating Japanese culture. You don't see that happening in other European nations. Reverse happened in Japan a few years before that. Japan is quite happy to call Britain it's #1 partner in Europe - so I think that demonstrates the sincerity and enduring nature of our relationships.

Britain won't fawn over China. We might even have the odd argument. But only because we really care and don't want China to make bad mistakes. If we didn't care, we'd only flatter you and reap the rewards. A good friend is someone who points out your flaws as well as your good side.

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Post time 2005-3-9 15:02:26 |Display all floors

How do you see China's role in Chinese-EU relations?

Do you see China as a fulcrum to balance EU and US?   

Do you see China using the EU template for a possible AU, with Asean being a step in that direction?

Depending on what side of the fence you are sitting, a strong Euro can be a great thing, or a bad thing.   With US facing economic problems, the Euro can be an increasing de facto reserve in the future for many central banks around the world, a possiblity not lost on Greenspan.  

If an AU is created, with an expected Asian currency reserve, do the European central banks see this possiblity as a threat, or an opportunity to limit US financial influence around the world?

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